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Duke law professor questions DA's impartiality

DURHAM, N.C. -- A special prosecutor should be named to handle the rape case against three Duke University lacrosse players, says the Duke law professor who led the school's investigation of the program.

James Coleman said Monday that statements by defense lawyers have caused him to question the impartiality of District Attorney Mike Nifong.

"I don't think he's showing detached judgment," Coleman said.

Nifong, a prosecutor for more than 27 years, was criticized for speaking in public about the case before charges were filed. But since then, he has made almost no public statements about it.

He declined comment Monday on Coleman's suggestion, The News &
Observer of Raleigh reported.

"I think any decent prosecutor in North Carolina could handle
this case," Coleman said. "It's important to have somebody that
people respect, someone who has no dog in the fight."

Coleman said he hasn't spoken to any lawyers in the case. Three Duke lacrosse players are accused of raping a dancer at an off-campus party on March 13.